Neither Rain, Nor Sleet, Nor Extra Effort

I just work here
Customer service has always been something that I’ve valued highly.  Nothing turns me off quicker than walking into an establishment only to find that the individual who is supposedly there to assist patrons would clearly rather be anywhere else, doing anything other than what he or she is currently being compensated to do.

The blank stare, the listless attitude, and the palpable irritation at having their personal downtime disturbed by someone requiring assistance are just a few of my personal plethora of customer service hot buttons.

newman-mailman1On the topic of poor customer service, it may seem as if I’ve arbitrarily singled out the Post Office as one of my primary whipping boys, but I really haven’t.  It’s just that the performance (perhaps it would be more accurate to say the lack thereof) of some, not all, postal workers qualifies them so well to serve as poster children for poor customer service.

The events of yesterday afternoon provide a classic example.  The building in which I work contains office space for five or six companies.  Located on the ground floor is a mail room with post boxes for each company.  Every afternoon at around 1:30 p.m., one of us meanders downstairs to pick up our mail.

On this particular afternoon, we were surprised when our letter carrier walked into the office with a large registered mail package requiring a signature before it could be delivered.

As she was signing on the dotted line, our receptionist happened to ask, “This is all of our mail, isn’t it?
Drawing her head back, with furled eyebrows, and mouth gaped open in complete disbelief, our letter carrier sputtered, “No. The rest of it’s downstairs in your box.”  For in her mind, where else could it possibly be?

Now let me say that if our mail box had been jammed with a large quantity of letters, periodicals, other packages, I would have had no issue with the postal worker leaving the mail there.  In this case however, it contained only two standard size envelopes.

Time for a rhetorical question.  How much additional effort would it have required to bring those two envelopes upstairs with the registered package?

I can answer that.  Not much.

Which exactly equals the amount expended.


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11 thoughts on “Neither Rain, Nor Sleet, Nor Extra Effort

  1. Gosh. I was once in a shoe shop, saw a pair I liked and asked the sales assistance if they had my size. She rudely said I could go into the warehouse and look for it myself. (I obviously left the shop then). Yeah, I value customer service too.

  2. I have been incredibly lucky lately. But, I know what you mean about the Post Office.
    This is a business that knows, distinctly, that you have no other options. So, it appears that they take advantage of you.
    I slightly knew a mail carrier, at one time of my life. She told me that it was rather commonplace to “mistakenly” delivers someone’s mail to the wrong address – if that person annoys them.
    She said that mail carriers do it all the time.
    After she told me that, I lost interest in continuing a friendship with her. She ending up defending their behavior, so I ended our communication.

  3. And you wonder why they are going out of business! The funny thing is, that the pony express incurred the same kinds of disinterests among its employees right before they went bankrupt!

  4. Since I worked in the customer service field for so many years, in so many different jobs, I am a strict taskmaster when it comes to my own experiences with other customer service reps. and am not afraid to vocalize my disappointment if I receive less than the best! There is no excuse for poor customer service.

    For example, I once ordered orange juice to go with my order at a McDonald’s and when I picked up my orange juice. When I told the girl at the window that it was missing..she told me that the girl that took my order through the horrible voice box we all deal with, she made a mistake and didn’t order it.

    I smiled and said no problem..just give me an orange juice and I’ll be happy to pay for it (of course, I had already paid for the other food at a different window). I was told that I would have to drive around again and order it or go inside to get it. I was livid and asked to speak to the manager. The little witch at the window said “I am the Manager.”

    I shook my head and let her know what I thought of her management and customer service skills. She just sneered and shut the window. I wrote a letter to McDonald’s and never got a response..although I hear that girl is no longer employed there. But, you can count me out of the millions that go to McDonald’s.

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